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A Randomised Controlled Trial of Inhibitory Control Training for Smoking Cessation: Outcomes, Mediators and Methodological Considerations

journal contribution
posted on 2021-11-03, 00:00 authored by Laura HughesLaura Hughes, Melissa HaydenMelissa Hayden, J Bos, N S Lawrence, George Youssef, R Borland, Petra StaigerPetra Staiger
Objective: Inhibitory control training (ICT) has shown promise for improving health behaviours, however, less is known about its mediators of effectiveness. The current paper reports whether ICT reduces smoking-related outcomes such as craving and nicotine dependence, increases motivation to quit and whether reductions in smoking or craving are mediated by response inhibition or a devaluation of smoking stimuli.Method: Adult smokers (minimum 10 cigarettes per day; N = 107, Mage = 46.15 years, 57 female) were randomly allocated to receive 14 days of smoking-specific ICT (named INST; a go/no-go task where participants were trained to not respond to smoking stimuli) or active control training (participants inhibited responding toward neutral stimuli). Participants were followed up to 3-months post-intervention. This trial was preregistered (Australian and New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry ID: ACTRN12617000252314; URL: https://www.anzctr.org.au/Trial/Registration/TrialReview.aspx?id=370204).Results: There were no significant differences between ICT and active control training groups. Specifically, participants in both groups showed significant reductions in craving, nicotine dependence, motivation and a devaluation (reduced evaluation) of smoking-stimuli up to 3-months follow-up compared to baseline. Inhibition and devaluation of smoking stimuli did not act as mediators. Devaluation of smoking stimuli was an independent predictor of smoking and craving at follow-up.Conclusion: Inhibitory control training (ICT) was no more effective at reducing smoking-related outcomes compared to the active control group, however, significant improvements in craving, dependence indicators and evaluation of smoking stimuli were observed across both groups. A return to basic experimental research may be required to understand the most effective ICT approach to support smoking cessation.

History

Journal

Frontiers in Psychology

Volume

12

Article number

ARTN 759270

Pagination

1 - 9

Publisher

Frontiers / Frontiers Media / Frontiers Research Foundation

Location

Lausanne, Switzerland

ISSN

1664-1078

eISSN

1664-1078

Language

English

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal